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ERIC Number: EJ896312
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 11
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0160-7561
Unity and Diversity in Educational Research: On Heterogeneous Community
Stemhagen, Kurt; Warnick, Bryan R.
Philosophical Studies in Education, v41 p116-126 2010
The debate rages on between those who endorse scientific standards for educational research--scientifically based research (SBR)--and those who see such a characterization of the research endeavor as unduly narrow and rigid. One unresolved question in this debate involves the place of inquiry that does not aim to produce generalizable knowledge, but instead insists on questioning knowledge claims. The persistence of this question reflects a deep division in the educational research community. In this paper, the authors argue for an uneasy reconciliation. They seek to blur the distinction between research that aims at practical knowledge and research that aims at finding limits of knowledge. Exploring limitations is an essential part of making something useful, they argue, while attempting to be practical will always reveal to them their limitations. First, they will present the competing paradigms of "research as generalization and simplification" and "research as exploring the limits of knowledge" as a point of departure and examine the ancient nature of this debate. Next, they take on D.C. Phillips' challenge for philosophers to "take an interest in empirical educational research" and they present two specific instances of educational research in light of this reframing. Finally, they consider the implications of this reconciliation for public policy. (Contains 22 footnotes.)
Ohio Valley Philosophy of Education Society. Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Preschool Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A